Also, how often should I change the litter?
We remove the grate in our cages and only use newspaper we can easily refresh daily. We don’t like “litters” as they promote mold growth possibly leading to aspergillosis plus it hides poop which is essential to inspect on a daily basis.
At least 3 types of perches, grooming wood and rope. A rope perch should be installed close to the top of the cage for the bird to sleep on preventing arthritic feet. The grooming perch should be installed by the food dish as the bird is active while eating and will groom toe nails and beak on it.
Remove the long perch that came with the cage and replace with something like a manzanita (wood) perch having uneven surfaces challenging the bird’s feet.
We like thermal perches for all our birds so we heat the bird not the home. Cuttlebone is really only necessary for females and although it helps beaks there are better beak conditioners like lava rock.
Most importantly a full spectrum light 6 inches above the cage on a timer. 12 hours on 12 ours off with no respect for daylight savings time. This helps keep the birds circadian rhythms in tune and will reduce hormonal behavior.
Get your bird DNA tested (we offer it for $18 test) so you know what you are dealing with. Sex is important to know. Breeding activity in hens coupled with a molt can be a big drain of caloric resources and nutrition should be adjusted during these stressful periods
Use the smooth dowel rod that came with the cage for “stick training” Make sure it is your bird’s “friend” so oher people can handle the bird if you’re not around and something you can use to fish the bird out from behind a dresser or refrigerator.
Think of toys as the “leaves of the trees” you GCC would be living in the wild. you want wood, shredding and at least on interactive toy all in the upper 1/3 of the cage.
Toys should be placed around the perimeter of the cage for easy accessibility also to provide private for the bird. Include at least one swing that doesn’t bang any other accessories. The cage in the video The cage needs at least 10 more toys in the upper third portion.
I clean our 2 birdcages every 24 to 48 hours that way it doesn’t become a big mess nor a huge chore
Seeking lock proof bird cage doors
I have two red fronted macaws and when they are out of their cage the male takes off the door handles. I am looking for two cages that have lock proof doors or unable to take apart. Also a play stand.
Kudos on the red fronted macaws Nancy – unfortunately there are no bird proof doors because of the intelligence and strength of these magnificent creatures.
Also published on Medium.